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|Title:||Integrated Circuits and Intellectual Property Rights in India|
|Abstract:||The Semiconductor Integrated Circuit Layout-Design Act, 2000, protects original, inherently distinctive layout-designs that have not been previously commercially exploited and registration is a necessary pre-requisite for protection. A layout-design is original if it is not merely a copy of all, or substantial part of another layout-design, and is the result of the creator’s own intellectual effort. Registration of a layout-design shall be available to the registered proprietor irrespective of the fact whether the layout-design is incorporated in an article or not. The Act makes provision for a registry to be headed by a Registrar for the purpose of registration of layout-designs. Protection under the Act extends for ten years and commences from the date of application for registration in case of layout-designs which have not been commercially exploited. For layout-designs, which have been commercially exploited (for less than two years) before the date of application for registration, protection commences retrospectively from date of first commercial exploitation. The registered-proprietor has the exclusive right to reproduce by any means the registered layout-design or any substantial portion of it. But the Act permits ‘reverse-engineering’ of a layout-design for limited purposes. The registered-proprietor also has the exclusive right to import, sell or distribute for commercial purpose any semiconductor chip products in which the registered layout-design is embodied. The Act provides for criminal remedies for the infringement of a layout-design expressly, civil remedies too are available to enforce rights under the Act. A registered layout-design can be assigned or transmitted with or without the goodwill of the business concerned. Registration of assignment or transmission is necessary to establish title to the registered layout-design. The Act also provides for reciprocal arrangements between convention countries. This article endeavours to examine the nature of the intellectual property involved in layout-designs, their use in semiconductor integrated circuits and the other relevant provisions of the Act.|
|Appears in Collections:||JIPR Vol.10(6) [November 2005]|
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